Town Heads into Competitive Election Season
Marblehead’s local election season has begun with several contested races heating up. Of the twelve official elected board and committee races, seven are contested, meaning there is more than one candidate for an open position. Local elections will be held on Tuesday, June 21. Polls are open 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM. For more information on voting, including where to vote, contact the Town Clerk’s office at 781-631-0528 or click here. To see a sample June 2022 Marblehead ballot, click here. To obtain an absentee ballot, click here.
The Select Board (formerly Board of Selectmen) has all five seats open for election this year, as these seats are one-year terms. This is a seven-way race; all sitting incumbents are running for re-election: Jackie Belf-Becker, Moses Grader, Erin Noonan, Jim Nye, and Alexa Singer. The two remaining candidates are Bret T. Murray (former member of the Select Board 2011 to 2017) and James (Jimmy) A. Full.
The Cemetery Commission has an open seat for a three-year term with incumbent candidate Richard F. Coletti running an uncontested race. There is also a seat open for a one-year unexpired term with two candidates in the race: Pam. M. Peterson and Rose Ann Wheeler McCarthy (formerly a member of the Cemetery Commission). This seat is open following the resignation of Rufus Titus.
Board of Health
One race generating local buzz is for the an up-for-grabs Board of Health seat. Incumbent Helaine Hazlett is facing newcomer candidate Thomas McMahon. It was during a contentious Board of Health meeting held over Zoom, covering various topics–including the funding and management of the Transfer Station project and the mask mandate in town during 2021 and part of this year–that McMahon announced his candidacy.
Abbot Library Board of Trustees
Two new candidates facing off for two Abbot Library Trustee seats are Deborah P. Payson and Jennifer Jewell.
Municipal Light Commission
For the Light Department, three candidates are vying for two Light Commissioner positions. Newcomer candidate Jean-Jacques Yarmoff is looking to unseat one of two incumbents running for re-election: Michael Hull and Walter Homan.
Finally, the race for two seats on the Marblehead School Committee sees incumbent Sarah Fox facing new candidates Alison A. Taylor and Reece Dahlberg. Several folks took out nomination papers, including newcomer Laura Tamagno, but she withdrew by the May 18 deadline and will not appear on the ballot.
Recreation and Parks Commission
Uncontested races include the five seats on Recreation and Parks. Joining the race is current Planning Board member Rossana Ferrante with four incumbents: Linda A. Rice Collins, Derek Y. Norcross, Karin L. Ernst, and Matthew Martin.
The other races that have incumbents running unopposed are Town Clerk Robin Michaud, Town Assessor William. J Willis, and Planning Board member Edward Nilsson.
Know the Candidates and the Issues
With several contested local races in the Marblehead election on June 21, there are many ways to get information about candidates and ballot questions. Listed below are the candidates in contested races and their website, social media, and contact information. This is the latest information available; Marblehead Beacon will update this page should additional sites go online or should changes be made. Candidates are welcome to submit information to email@example.com.
There are two candidate events that showcase candidates both in person and online. The League of Women Voters of Marblehead hosted its annual candidates forum night live on May 24. The League event was held at the Marblehead High School Library. Click here for a link to the MHTV recording of this event.
The local activist group PowerUp! hosted a virtual candidate forum on June 6 and again tonight, June 7, at 7:00 PM. Candidates from contested races have been invited to participate in a moderated question panel. Leader Megan Sweeney says, “this will be an opportunity for candidates to engage with voters in a facilitated and friendly fashion. Among the many positive comments received from our past two events were requests to hold similar sessions with candidates for elected office.”
PowerUp! events require pre-registration, which may be done by clicking here. Click here for its Facebook page or email Powerup.firstname.lastname@example.org. When these recordings are made available they will be updated here.
Editor’s Note: Jennifer Schaeffner, Marblehead Beacon co-founder and editorial staff member at Marblehead Beacon, sits on the Steering Committee of PowerUp!
Candidate contact information (updated as information is made available):
James (Jimmy) A. Full:
Bret T. Murray:
Rose Ann Wheeler McCarthy
Pam M. Peterson
Board of Health
Alison A. Taylor:
Two Questions to Appear on the June 21 Ballot:
Should the Town of Marblehead be allowed to exempt from the provisions of proposition two and one half, so-called, the amounts required to pay for the bond issued in order to pay costs of: a road and sidewalk repair program for the next (5) years, for the payment of all other costs incidental and related thereto including engineering; and purchase and upgrade of technology in the town offices and school department and for the payment of all other costs incidental and related thereto including engineering, design and installation; and for roof reconstruction and major repairs on the Town and school buildings over the next five (5) years and for the payment of all other costs incidental and related thereto including engineering, design and installation; and the construction of a salt shed and the replacement of boilers at the High School and the payment of all other costs incidental and related thereto including engineering, design and installation?
Shall the Town of Marblehead be allowed to assess an additional $3,051,093 in real estate and personal property taxes for the purposes of the School Department Budget for which the monies from this assessment will be used for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022?